Energise Ōtaki Minutes – April 2019
Wednesday 10, April 2019 6pm – 7:45pm Dr. Gertrude Atmore Supper Room, Memorial Hall corner Main and Aotaki Streets, Ōtaki
- Start: 6:03
- Attendees: Leigh Ramsey (Chair), Hannelore Wagner-Nicholls (Treasurer), Lloyd Chapman (Secretary), Karina Hilterman, Daniel Müller, Seuga Frost, Shelly Warwick, Hanspeter Quadri, Bryony Rogers, Mark Minard, Tim Beere, Stuart Pritchard, Barbara Harford, Len Nicholls, Sara Velasquez (Coordinator for Energise Ōtaki), plus one (no name shared on attendee list).
- Apologies: Phil Malpas, Andy Fraser, Marilyn Stevens, Iain Jerrett, Gael Fergusen, David Rumsey
- Minutes Ratified: 4.1. Motion to ratify March 2019 Minutes (Leigh Ramsey), Seconded (Hanna Wagner- Nicholls)
- Treasurers Report: Accounts in good standing. Term Deposit will come due September 2019
- Special Announcement Recognising that members are busy progressing projects, the Energise Ōtaki Committee has decided that Energise Ōtaki Community Meetings will change from monthly to every two months. The next public meeting will be on Wednesday June 12, 2019 from 6pm – 8pm. We will also change the location to the Whare Nui meeting room at Ōtaki College. Many thanks to Andy Fraser, the Principal at Ōtaki College who has generously offered the College’s meeting rooms. A big thanks to Andy and Ōtaki College.
- Guest Speaker: Stuart Pritchard, Forest Lakes Organic Farm Ōtaki Topic: Regenerative Farming: The Journey to Organics and the Rewards
Thank you Stuart for sharing your passion about healthy soil and doing what is right. For anyone who would like more information, please get in contact, otherwise a summary of Stuart’s key points are below:
* For 6.5 years the farm – Forest Lake Farms – has been organic.
* The cows, bees, birds, wetland animals, mycorrhizals and microbes LOVE the organic grass – letting nature do what it knows how to do.
* With Functional Fertiliser – the grasses are improved and the cows get a mix of grasses to eat – they graze on all sorts of “weeds” – and love them. Cattle fatten earlier. Healthy cattle. Hasn’t had to have veterinarians in for the cattle. No diarrhea. Cattle don’t get worms or lice.
* The soil smells sweet. The roots go deep. 30% more pasture growth and 40 day rotation (average is 30 days).
* This method is proven, but it is very hard to convince the “established” way of dumping fertilisers onto soil – it kills the soil. If farmers took a chance, this could be an extra $250k to each farmer – this could be an extra $1.8 billion to New Zealand’s GDP.
* Nitrogen added to soils through fertilisers poisons the soil and leaches into waterways.
* Bold new thinking and leaders are needed to make change now. We have the data of the improved soil and the benefit to the cows and to the farmer. Be bold! Be different! Go Organic!
- Projects Overview
8.1. Solar Energy Project – Progressing well.
8.2. Curtain bank – finished the Ōtaki drive with 25 families and a few from Waikanae and Paraparaumu. Not as much uptake as hoped.
8.3. Bike Space – progressing
8.4. Ōtaki Kindergarten Power to the People – Great party. Still need to finalise (solar panel and modification to bike)
8.5. Community Gardens: Part 2 – progressing with Birthright
8.6. Ōtaki College
8.6.1. Solar Array – Discussing data logging, recording and sharing data.
8.6.2. Pool Data Analysis – ongoing
- General Business
9.1. Coastal Energy Update – Phil sent apologies
9.2. Action Group for CBW (Cycleway, Bridleway, and Walkway) – request for support of their action group that is trying to get a CBW on the Ōtaki to Levin Expressway. Shelly to send a letter.
9.3. Engineering NZ rolling out the Wonder Project – meeting to be set up with Daniel to discuss how EO can support https://wonderproject.nz/
- Finish: 19:45